Tymchuk K. Arthropods as indicators of destructive social and agricultural effects on ecological systems

Українська версія

Thesis for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

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  • 101 - Екологія


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ДФ 08.051.022

Oles Honchar Dnepropetrovsk National University


The thesis is aimed at the study of the expediency of using spiders and bees as indicators of destructive social and agricultural effects. The study was carried out in a gradient of social and ecological system conditions in Chernivtsi region. The current information on the role of arthropods for the provision of ecosystem services, and their bioindication potential, was summarized. Literature on using Apis mellifera L., 1758, and spiders (Araneae) as indicators of ecosystem status was analysed. It was concluded that the possibilities of arthropodoindication had been studied unilaterally with an emphasis on the ecological component of landscapes, while the factors of social nature had remained out of the attention of scientists. The thesis covers three blocks of empirical studies. The first block concerns the search for promising syn- and demecological characteristics of Araneae to indicate destructive agricultural effects. It was found that hortobionts are characterized by the highest species richness and diversity, which prompted us to further study. The analysis of the structure of spider assemblages inhabiting biotopes with different types of destructive agricultural effects within the territories of «traditional», «intermediate» and «intensive» strata allowed singling out species with high informative value in diagnosing agricultural impacts. Argiope bruennichi (Scopoli, 1772) and Microlinyphia pusilla (Sundevall, 1830) can be recommended for bioindication of biotopes with low, and Porrhomma microphthalma (O. PickardCambridge, 1871) – with high intensity of destructive agricultural effects. Spider assemblages of experimental sites were characterized by the absence of eudominant species; common synecological indices did not show high informative value in diagnosing destructive agricultural effects. Instead, they reflected well the negative impact of growing energy crops on the structure of herpetobiont spider assemblages in the agroecosystems of the Bukovynian State Agricultural Research Station of NAAS of Ukraine. Demecological parameters of Xerolycosa miniata (C.L. Koch, 1834) showed that this species is a good indicator of phytodiversity. The second block of the study is aimed at analysing the feasibility to indicate the destructive agricultural effects based on the study of the epizootic situation of invasive diseases of bees on the studied gradient. The statistical data of the Chernivtsi Regional State Laboratory of the State Service of Ukraine for Food Safety and Consumer Protection for the period of 2014–2020 were analysed. The proportion of samples 6 positive for varroosis varied from 1.38 to 26.79%, and for nosemosis from 0.33 to 9.34%. The results of our own field work showed that the average infestation of worker bees and brood with varroasis was 34.80±14.97% and 38.98±9.51%, respectively. The proportion of colonies where spores Nosema spp. were not detected is ranged from 17.65% to 52.63% for the studied areas of Chernivtsi region. Significant infestation of bees with Varroa destructor causes widespread use of drugs against Varroa by beekeepers. The situation of anti-varroa drugs on the market in Ukraine as for September 2020 has been analysed. A list of 136 drug brands available to Ukrainian beekeepers has been compiled. They were based on 10 active substances. The obtained results indicate the imperfection of the existing system of control over the safety, quality, effectiveness of veterinary drugs, their production, sale and use. Cases of violation of instructions by beekeepers and use of fake anti-varroa drugs have been revealed. This and other risk factors associated with beekeeping practices proved the doubtfulness of apimonitoring without taking into account the factors of the beekeepers’ influence (for example, untimeliness of diagnosis of numerous bee diseases, proper preparation of colonies for wintering, qualitative feeding). This proved the relevance of a comprehensive analysis of the socialecological aspects of the «bee-human» system. The last block of the research is devoted to the analysis of the state of the «beehuman» system by using the focus group method on the socio-ecological gradient of Chernivtsi region. The boundaries of the studied gradient are defined by the traditional agricultural system in the west and intensive agricultural production in the east. According to the results from 15 focus groups on «traditional», «intermediate» and «intensive» regional strata, 33 topics related to beekeeping, health and productivity of bee colonies have been identified. Based on the obtained data, the importance of the 7 social subsystem in relation to the studied model has been shown, as well as the need to apply an interdisciplinary approach in the analysis of SES. Based on the results, it has been concluded that the use of spiders and bees in environmental monitoring system will promote effective assessment of socialecological systems, their management and further development.


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